Bee Report — Splitting Hives and Raising Queens (Part II)

This is the second and final part of a short discussion of splitting hives using ideas found in Mel Disselkoen’s On-The-Spot (OTS) queen rearing method and the Coweta Beekeeping Method. In this post, I’ll go over how to finish the split by making hives for honey production or population increase. Check out the first post, … More Bee Report — Splitting Hives and Raising Queens (Part II)

Bee Report — Splitting Hives and Raising Queens (Part I)

Many beekeepers depend on purchasing packages (screened boxes full of bees with a queen) or nucleus hives (mini-hives to be inserted into a full-size one), which cost between $150 and 250 each, depending on the local variables. Some beekeepers end up purchasing bees each year to replace dead-outs (bee colonies that died during the winter). … More Bee Report — Splitting Hives and Raising Queens (Part I)

Research Project No. 3 — Mite-Tolerant Drone Colony Breeding

The institute is hosting a potential study on rearing mite-tolerant drone colonies. Funding requests are currently under review. Title: Varroa destructor–Tolerant Honey Bee Drone Breeding Project Project Leader: Dr. Scott A. J. Johnson, Director, Low Technology Institute Project Partners: University of Wisconsin Extension–Milwaukee and local beekeepers Anticipated Dates of Project: Funding requested for April–December 2018; … More Research Project No. 3 — Mite-Tolerant Drone Colony Breeding

Varroa Mite Presentation Slideshow, Notes, and Resources

Last night, Scott gave a presentation to the Dane County Beekeeping Association about Varroa destructor, a parasite afflicting the European honeybee across the world. An audio recording was made, but due to technical difficulties (wrong microphone selected on recorder), it is not available. Instead, the notes with citations are available as well as links to … More Varroa Mite Presentation Slideshow, Notes, and Resources

Upcoming Presentation: Varroa destructor, Scourge of the Honey Bee

Scott Johnson, director of the Low Technology Institute, will be speaking to the Dane County Beekeepers’ Association (locally known as Madbees) about the Varroa destructor mite. This tick-like creature has become honey bees’ top pest over the last few decades. As we’re learning, colony collapse disorder seems to be caused by a variety of factors … More Upcoming Presentation: Varroa destructor, Scourge of the Honey Bee

Das Bienenhaus (The Bee House) Information from the Swiss Village Archives — Part II

Yesterday I described the Bienenhaus (bee house) at the Swiss Historical Village in New Glarus, Wisconsin. Today I am providing PDFs of four resources from their archives. Thanks again to the folks at the Swiss Historical Village for access to these materials. Their bee house was donated by the Barth family and in the archive … More Das Bienenhaus (The Bee House) Information from the Swiss Village Archives — Part II

Das Bienenhaus (The Bee House) at the Swiss Historical Village– Part I

In Switzerland and other German-speaking Alpine regions, bees were traditionally kept in large, purpose-built sheds. Since the 1970s, their popularity has declined as they were overtaken by Langstroth and other cheaper beehive configurations. I’ve been interested in this type of beehive because they are aesthetically pleasing and may provide better winter survival as the colonies … More Das Bienenhaus (The Bee House) at the Swiss Historical Village– Part I